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Lieberman aide disputes 'double-cross'

Jan. 13, 2010 at 5:15 PM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 13 (UPI) -- Assertions that U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman, Ind-Conn., blindsided Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., on a healthcare compromise aren't true, an adviser says.

Lieberman adviser Marshall Wittmann told the Washington publication Politico Wednesday that an upcoming New York Times story in which Reid claims Lieberman double-crossed him on supporting a Medicare compromise has no basis in fact.

Politico said a preview of the Times story portrays Reid as furious when Lieberman revealed during a Dec. 13 appearance on CBS' "Face the Nation" that the couldn't support a Reid-brokered healthcare bill compromise in which a Medicare buy-in for younger Americans would be included after allegedly assuring Reid privately he would back it.

The Times quotes Reid as saying, "He double-crossed me. ... Let's not do what he wants. Let the bill just go down," but Wittmann told Politico Lieberman made his objections about the Medicare buy-in known to Reid beforehand in a letter, which he provided to the publication.

Politico said that in the letter, "Lieberman voices objections to the deal, but stops short of explicitly saying he would vote against it."

New York Times reporter Adam Nagourney told Politico he stood by the accuracy of his story.

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